Yesterday morning, at 2am, the time in Mexico fell back an hour. At 1am, 2am, 2am, 3:30am and on until about 6am, I was waking up and checking the time because I was paranoid that “maybe the time didn’t change today”. My phone and laptop never switched (even when I power cycled my phone) which cause some great alarm on my part because yesterday we went on a trip to Mexico City. At what I thought was 7:45 am, I started running searches on my computer to see what time it really was. Time.gov said it was 7:45 am. I woke my roommate up and we got ready, but I was confused at how so many people could have been wrong about the time change. I Googled Daylight Savings Time and found a website that told me the US reverts to Standard Time on the first Sunday of November. “Great” I thought “it’s a week away…” I ran out the door to see my host dad typing away on the computer. Staring at the screen, I asked him, “Que hora tiene usted?” He looked a little confused so I tried clarifying “que hora es?” He tried answering a different question about the spreadsheet he was working on so I kept trying. Eventually, he understood and said “Oh! You’re talking about the time change!” It was my turn to looked confused… I just looked it up and I could have sworn that it was a week from today… then it hit me “Is the time change different in Mexico compared to the United States?” He smiled and answered “Yes! It changed today” Turns out, I was only checking US sources. I now had an extra hour before I had to do anything so I changed my location to Mexico City on my laptop and phone (sure enough, hour behind).
That was only the start of my morning. We went to Mexico City yesterday for a city tour. When we arrived, the bus couldn’t make it to the Zocalo because there were demonstrators in support of the PRD (Party of the Democratic Revolution) flooding the streets. About five blocks away from the center, we hopped out of the bus and our tour began. Our first stop was the ruins of Iztapalapa, which, despite it’s age and the fact that it had been mostly covered up by the city for hundreds of years, was in pretty good shape. The Aztecs were the first to realize that their city was sinking and had an interesting solution to their potentially devastating problem. Just rebuild….over what’s already there. The paved streets that remained were sloped like rolling hills and the buildings reminded me of a sinking sandcastle; but what was really cool to see was the layers of building and road that the Aztecs had built. There was a small chunk of road missing and our tour guide, Charlie, pointed out that you could see the progress of the nation and how it grew into a super empire, just from those streets. The original street used small slates of rock to pave the way, but as the empire grew and conquered other nations, its resources grew as big as the stones they were eventually using to pave over the old roads. It was really cool to see how thick the walls of the buildings were from adding so many layers of the same thing. Layers of steps, layers of angles… all to straighten it out again. Funny thing is, much like the leaning tower of Piza, the heavier it gets, the faster it sinks. In the little over 100 years during the rule of the Aztecs, the temple was redone no less than 11 times. Can you imagine?
On the other half of our city tour, we explored an art museum in which Deigo Rivera and other artists murals were displayed, The Government Palace (Diego really got around) and the Cathedral. At the Government Palace, we really dove into Rivera’s murals and explored the different figures tucked away where you wouldn’t notice them right away and saw a version of one of his famous murals, Dream of a Sunday Afternoon in Alameda Park, in which several of the figures were replaced with skeletons (for the upcoming Day of the Dead!). Yesterday, I feel like we walked around in circles, but it was all well worth it and I definitely slept much better last night.
Today I have class, but I might visit the market in the afternoon. Till tomorrow!